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Student Recycling FAQs


Why are the recycling bins different in the residence halls? 

At least three types of bins can be found at all Hopkins spaces: Recycling (Green), Compost (Yellow), Incinerate (Grey). Spaces, depending on their specialties, may contain fewer or additional bins as explained below.  

Academic Buildings: Academic buildings on the Homewood campus have a dual stream recycling program with separate paper and cardboard recycling collection in blue bins and container recycling (metal and plastic containers) collection in green bins. The reasons for this are 1) the university sometimes receives revenue for recycling paper and cardboard, 2) keeping paper separate ensures a higher quality raw material to make a new product and 3) separating materials allows for greater flexibility in where we send our recycling.  

Residence Halls: Residence halls have a single stream recycling program, which means paper, cardboard, and metal and plastic containers can be put in one recycling bin. This helps save space in the dorms where little paper is generated.  Residence Halls also have collection bins for electronics (basically anything with a battery or a cord) and terracycle (which includes energy bar and candy wrappers, snack bags, empty makeup containers, old pens, and used toothbrushes and toothpaste tubes). 

Can I compost in my residence hall? 

Yes! All residence halls have compost bins available. They may not be at every waste station so be sure to locate the most convenient one to you. If you would like to recommend additional bin locations for your residence hall please contact the Housing Operations Office.  

If you live in a suite with a kitchen you can request a small countertop bin from the Housing Operations Office to store compostable material until full and then dispose of in the nearest common compost bin on your floor. Use this handy cheat sheet to help you remember what can be composted.

Can I compost at events put on by my student group?  

Yes you can! In fact, if you host a zero waste event, one in which only compostable disposables are provided, there is no charge for the compost and recycling bins. There is a charge for events that are not zero waste, so save money by choosing a Preferred Green Caterer.  To request event support, please fill out the request form at least 48 hours prior to your event. If you have additional questions about hosting a Zero Waste Event, email us.

What other types of items can I collect for recycling?

TerraCycle is a program that collects hard to recycle items and turns them into new products. While Terracycle items cannot go in the hallway recycling bins, students can place the following items in the designated bins in the lobbies of their residence halls: 

Writing utensils: Pens, pencils, markers 

Food packaging: Snack and chip bags, energy bar and candy wrappers,  

Oral care: toothpaste tubes, toothbrushes, floss containers,  

Skin care packaging: lip balm tubes and caps, soap dispensers and tubes, body wash caps, lotion dispensers and caps.  

Hair care packaging: shampoo caps, conditioner caps, hair gel tubes, and caps, hair spray triggers, and hair paste caps. Please note #1 and 2 bottles are accepted in Homewood Recycling bins. 

Cosmetic packaging: lipstick & lip gloss tubes, mascara tubes, eye shadow & cases, liquid and powder foundation packaging, eyeliner and lip liner pencils, etc. 

My dorm is missing a bin. How do I request one?  

Contact the Housing Operations Office. 

How can I get more involved with Recycling on Campus? 

Homewood Recycling does employ a small number of students! If you are interested in working with us, please email us. 

We love working with student groups to collaborate on events and projects so if you are interested, please email us. 

Where can I learn more about waste diversion on campus?

Homewood Recycling is on Facebook and Instagram and we post helpful videos on YouTube


Recycling Services


Leana Houser


Brandon Riley

FY21 Hourly Rates:
Overtime: $54.15



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